You’ve probably heard a lot in recent years about digital modern currencies
and the way how to pay with that. And, of course, it’s good to know – that using that
payment and ledger systems are increasing a day by day. You also can be
traded for goods or services with vendors who accept Bitcoin or other kinds as
payment. And it’s so important for lots of companies and private individuals who
providing any services to develop their type of accepting payments. That’s going to
make the easier way for clients who would like to pay your law firm for services
rendered. And, just as accepting debit and credit cards online makes you more
marketable and appealing to potential and current clients.
In addition, everything also depends on a territory on which services are
provided and the law regulation of the cryptocurrencies. The legal status varies
substantially from country to country and is still undefined or changing around.
While some countries have explicitly allowed its use and trade, others have banned
or restricted it.
At the moment cryptocurrencies officially not prohibited in Ukraine. It
means like “Everything that is not forbidden is allowed”. On November 2014, the
NBU gave an explanation of the Cryptocurrency, but it can be seen as a warning
rather than a norm, because of the legislative level and absence of realized de jure.
At the present time, this way of payment still develop.
The overall approach of the EU towards the blockchain technology is
positive and welcoming.
According to USA legal system in 2017, at least eight U.S. States have
worked on bills accepting or promoting the use of Bitcoin and blockchain
technology, while a couple of them have already passed them into law.
The most important developments for blockchain’s regulation and
implementation in the U.S. in an evidentiary context occurred in Arizona
(recognition of smart contracts), Vermont (blockchain as evidence), Chicago (real
estate records), and, most importantly, Delaware (pending initiative authorizing
registration of shares of Delaware companies in blockchain form).
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission has granted LedgerX, a
cryptocurrency trading platform operator, approval to become the first federally
regulated digital currency options exchange and clearinghouse in the U.S. d
Obviously one the most controversial occupation for getting paid in digital
currencies is an attorney cause of the ethics opinion. Lawyers may receive digital
payments, provided they:
Notify the client that the payment will be immediately converted to
U.S. dollars or other currency;
Make the conversion through a payment processor;
Credit the client's account at the time of payment.
The biggest issue is the possibility of rising from the volatility of crypto
currencies’ price –it could fluctuate as much as 10% in value in a given day.
Given this volatility, a billable fee of one digital currency could cost a client
wildly different prices based on the market’s behavior that day. As we know
according to the ethics border it’s prohibited attorneys from charging unreasonable
fees to their clients. In this case, immediate conversion reduces the possible
unconscionable over-payment of legal fees, the ethics opinion says.
Lawyers may hold digital currencies in trust for clients if they won't be
converted to any other currencies. The currency must be held separately from the
lawyer's property and be safeguarded because, among other reasons, banks do not
insure against hacked crypto.
It cannot be deposited into a client trust account, however. It must first be
converted into cash, the ethics opinion says. If it is paid as a retainer, it must be
converted into dollars. Attorneys must be careful that this property they accept as
payment is not contraband, does not reveal client secrets, and is not used in a
money-laundering or tax avoidance scheme because convertible virtual currencies
can be associated with such mischief.
Anyway, while the exact contours of lawyers charging in cryptocurrencies
are still hazy, one thing is for certain – a potential new option is emerging.
And it seems a safe bet that this way of payment will become increasingly common in the